Monday, December 6, 2010

Impound

I left the auto pound on Saturday afternoon all dirty and sour and broke, but with my beautiful, battle-scarred car who loves me unconditionally, even when I leave him out in the cold. Poor thing was on a snow route between 3AM and 7AM on Friday night. Who has the patience to read the goddamn novels posted on street signs? Obviously not a single person in Chicago, because they were all at the fucking auto pound on Saturday picking up their cars.

There were about sixty people heeled into the double-wide that houses the Chicago Auto Pound's maze of a queue and it smelled like fucking bitter exhaustion. The guy behind me was wearing a fur-collared coat like it was a Hawaiian shirt, zipped open over his bare, red gut and a cartoonish, seven-inch silver cross hung perfectly between a pair of ruddy pecs. He hacked into grimy hands and kept on growling to his buddy about getting a "wrecker" in one of those voices that sounds like rock quarry. I wanted to tell him to wash his hands and put on a fucking shirt. It's ten degrees outside. This isn't fucking Kokomo.

The guy with him might not have been his buddy at all, I mean he could have just been a random dude standing in line that had to awkwardly half-chuckle at some boulder stranger's undecipherable jokes while trying to avoid eye contact with his gaping naval. I couldn't stop staring at it. Every time I turned, there it was being all belly-buttony and gross, like someone jammed a tulip bulb into a blowhole.

This one middle-aged woman in Juicy pants and Uggs took a good fucking half hour. She kept on sending her sixteen-year old son out to the car while she lovingly manhandled her adolescent daughter and argued with the worker in the window. And he would trudge outside and come back with some scrap of paper and hand it to her with loathing, and she would snap, "Whadaya doin? This expired in, like, foor yeers ago and it was fer the Acura. Go bayack and just bring mahmmy everything yoo find."

And he would stare at her with undead eyes fueled by sixteen years of scorn and belittlement, resigning back into the cold while his mom ran her manicure through her daughter's golden hair. "He doon't knoow where the glove compartment is at," she scoffed conversationally to the woman in the window, who snorted. "His dayad never teached him anything." I wanted to punch her. On behalf of grammar and justice.

Plus, the couple in front of me kept on making out and telling secrets in giggly, hushed Spanish and I was totally freaked out.

Nearly two hours later and I'm riding in a van with a wheezy old man around the pound trying to find my car in a lot the size of Siberia, and just as dirty, barren and cold. I hate it there.  But I've always wanted to go to Siberia...

...

15 comments:

nursemyra said...

there's at least two sentences in every paragraph of this post that I wish I'd written

FF said...

Well there you go, you can write. Keep knocking those galoshes in your brain together and see what else falls off.

daisyfae said...

tulip bulb in a blowhole? i might have accidently gone out with him once... was it hairy?

Hives said...

The belly button-tulip bulb-blow hole analogy made me choke on my coffee. BAH! Ah, it was worth it.

Also, adore the new layout. RAWR!

MoLinder said...

this is fantastic. a perfect description of the pound. my favorite line has to be "I wanted to punch her. On behalf of grammar and justice". awesome.

renalfailure said...

So this is why you need those writing jobs... damn parking authority. Still, it has given birth to this literary work of awesome.

Mia Watts said...

OMG, Rassels, this is brilliant. There were so many little descriptions o' wonder that I felt like it would be more effective to roll around naked in a pile of them than to clip and paste them here.

"in one of those voices that sounds like rock quarry." Love this!

Belly-buttony and gross... then the tulip bulb was brilliant.

And punching the woman in the name of grammar and justice is how I feel a lot of the time and I TOTALLY understand that sentiment. You rock, chiquita banana.

Ellie said...

And I had thought there was no worse place than the the DMV. I was obviously wrong.

Mongolian Girl said...

This was so good - so right on descriptive - that I feel like I was there and need to stand in the shower for 20 minutes.

Sid said...

"smelled like fucking bitter exhaustion"

Love that description. Might use it in the future. Actually I feel like i *have* to use it.

JMH said...

If I wore briefs, they'd smell like bitter exhaustion.

(Sorry, blame Passport Scotch)

JMH said...

I don't want to pressure you to respond to comments, although more Rassles = more better, but I'd like your opinion on this. Someone said "if you're laughing at what you're writing, stop drinking." There seems to be a fundamental flaw there, but I can't put my finger on it.

Zen Mama said...

Living in Milwaukee, noticing how the yadaheys speak up here has always been fascinating but reading the actual words phonetically gifted to me through this post was a delight, fer sure. Sorry about your car though.

Rassles said...

Nurse: you very well could do it if you wanted to, though.

FF: Hearts.

Daisy: Si.

Hives: Haven't seen you much 'round these parts of late. How've you been?

MoL: BLOG

RF: Parking in Chicago is a vortex of fees and surcharges.

Mia: Thanks, friend. I feel like it's descriptions like these that keep me from writing professionally. I can't write "belly-buttony and gross" in a grant, for example, but I would if I had my way.

Ellie: Oh, the pound is the worst. Easily peasily lemily sqeezily.

MG: I DID stand in the shower for 20 minutes.

Sid: I've said it four times this week, just to emphasize how tired I am.

JMH: Scotch makes me feel like my brain is scorched.

JMH: I believe you just inspired my next post.

ZM: The worst accent, for reals, is Indiana. I have a hard time sitting peacefully around Indiana-ans.

Chris said...

I saw a middle-aged guy at the Comcast service center this week with one of those Fresh Prince/Abe Lincoln hat afros. You didn't see him at the impound, did you? He seems like he would fit.